Located on the old site of Kulsamah on Beech Road in Chorlton, we were excited to be invited to the opening of Mish Mash restaurant in Chorlton. Regulars of Beech Road will recognise that the site has been under development recently, and Mish Mash have done a fantastic job with the building, adding light and colour and a great looking bar area.
As I’m not a regular restaurant reviewer for Finest, I made a couple of rookie mistakes during the evening — the first of which was indulging myself a bit too heavily on the introductory canapes, which were delicious. Worth a special mention was the whitebait, fried in an ingeniously crispy chickpea batter, and served with a mustard and garlic dipping sauce. I should probably have tried to stop myself serially shovelling handfuls of these into my gob. So full. Time to go home? Ah, but there’s still the matter of the three course tasting menu, whoops.
My dining partner, the venerable Mr Nanny Banton, selected a booth for us to sit inside. At our table we were greeted with bread, butter and a balsamic vinegar and olive oil dip, and a choice of white and rose wines from the Bolney Wine Estate in Sussex. No respite for my bulging stomach then.
The tasting menu we were given was short and to the point, having apparently been tweaked by a local celebrity chef. With a choice of two starters, three mains and two desserts, between us we covered most of the dishes, although inevitably the vegetarian main was omitted.
For starters I opted for the smoked salmon and earl grey dressing, an exciting and unexpected combination, very much in keeping with the Mishmash philosophy. The headline ingredients cooperated nicely with one another, a fine piece of salmon given a delicate twist by the citrus flavours in the traditional brew.
Nanny opted for the poached pear and pasta salad, as he “didn’t like salmon”, although that didn’t seem to stop him eating half of mine. The pear was a nice refreshing starter, rendered slightly savoury by the addition of parmesan cheese and pine nuts.
As for the mains, it was hard to pick a favourite from our two choices, so I won’t, but I’ll just say that if you are into your spicy food (as we all are at Finest), the signature mojito chicken dish is for you. The spicy jalapeno sauce, wild rice and mint evoke memories of wholesome home cooking, along with just a hint of the traditional Cuban highball.
I chose the ham, egg and chips though, which stood shoulder to shoulder with the chicken. A real delight, the dish was served with ham roasted on the bone, perfectly fried egg, a cheeky dash of mushy peas and triple cooked chips on the side. I’m always entertained by a weird receptacle, and enjoyed a finely judged mustard reduction served inside a miniature watering can. If only the sauce had poured out of the spout!
For dessert I made my second rookie mistake of the evening, scoffing half of my salted caramel baked banana split before remembering to photograph it — I won’t trouble you with the resulting images. Just picture something sweet, tasty and banana shaped. I thought I was supposed to be full?
So with that, and a couple of (liquid) mojitos, we were off and left feeling sure that Mish Mash’s unique menu will secure its place as a favourite alongside its peers on Chorlton’s Beech Road.
Article By Guest Writer Alexander Knight-Percival